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Philadelphia gets $10M surveillance camera expansion

Published by Dan on October 23, 2007 9:22 AM

Looking to secure high-crime areas and cut down on gun violence, the city of Philadelphia this week announced plans to dramatically expand its surveillance program. Currently Philly's high-tech crime-fighting program consists of 18 security cameras, but that number will increase substantially with the addition of 250 network cameras. When you consider that the 18-camera system reduced violent crime by 37% in the areas it monitored, it's easy to understand why the city is very enthusiastic about building up its surveillance network.

City officials want to do more than just capture footage of crimes for investigations after the fact. One of the primary goals of the camera expansion is to deter crimes from ever happening in the first place. For that reason, the security cameras will be placed out in the open. The thinking is that with security cameras in plain site, criminals will be less likely to commit violent acts and other criminal activity, knowing there will be visual evidence. Research conducted by the city showed that surveillance cameras are effective for preventing violent crimes as well as premeditated crimes like robbery.

Philadelphia's surveillance camera expansion will cost nearly $10 million. The first cameras will be installed in the most sensitive high-crime areas, with an eventual goal of monitoring most, if not all, city districts.

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